Last night’s UFC on Versus 4 fight card wasn’t drawing much excitement, especially once it was revealed that longtime middleweight contender Nate Marquardt would be unable to make his welterweight debut against Rick Story.
A heavyweight bout between Cheick Kongo and Pat Barry was bumped to the main event, which certainly didn’t seem to have anyone drooling and Charlie Brenneman, whose originally scheduled opponent was forced off of the card, was brought in to face Story in what many assumed would be an easy win for the surging prospect.
As is often the case with a card carrying low expectations though, these guys proved many wrong and absolutely delivered on the excitement. The entire card was packed with entertaining fights (save for a few less-than-thrilling contests) and the main and co-main event bouts left everyone with a good taste in their mouths.
Fighting in front of a hometown crowd on essentially one day’s notice, Brenneman pulled off a huge upset victory over Story by out-hustling the fellow wrestling stylist and greatly improved his stock in the welterweight division by doing so. In the main event of the evening, Barry and Kongo absolutely threw down, with Kongo rising from the very brink of defeat to come back and knock Barry out cold.
At the post-fight press conference, UFC president Dana White had strong words of praise for the fighters who held up what was perceived as an ailing fight card.
“I think this is one of the best cards we’ve ever done,” said White. “From top to bottom, great fights. It was a great night. The fights were awesome. These guys came in and delivered. I say this all the time: we’re very lucky in the UFC that we’ve got guys like Rick Story, [Charlie] Brenneman, all these guys that step up when bad things happen. These guys step up and put on a show like the show you saw tonight. From the first prelim to the main event, they killed it tonight. It was awesome. … I think this is one of the best cards we’ve ever had.”
UFC on Versus 4 went down at the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.